Guns N’ Roses fans brave elements for Slane Castle gig

Slane Gallery Guns N’ Roses at Slane 1992: Appetite for self-destruction Cellophane flowers: My favourite ‘Sgt Pepper’ moments Her memories of the band include meeting Slash in The Cock Tavern in Howth. Stories about about the band’s rock and roll excess abound. “It’s just going to be a good show no matter what the weather,” said Maguire on her way to the gig. This was a gig for fans. But the fact that they are past their prime does not detract from the thrill of seeing some of the best rock songs performed by the people who wrote them, with Axl Rose, Duff McKagan and Slash together for this concert in their Not In This Lifetime tour. After a blissful week of scorching weather, Guns N’Roses fans woke up to torrential rain across much of Leinster. Tickets to the 80,000 capacity gig sold out in a day, and like many, Kitty Maguire, from Dublin, got her’s on Christmas Day. My stepdad was a huge fan and sent my sister over to get his autograph. Made it to the Emerald Isle… First stop is Slane…#GnFnR #NotInThisLifetime Tourhttps://t.co/R8emcwZ1PY pic.twitter.com/j52H4PGi1B— Guns N' Roses (@gunsnroses) May 27, 2017 Everyone just partied so hard to them… Otherkin well deserve all the backstage high fives available given the young Irish band’s excellent performance in the tricky opening slot. The massive natural amphitheatre was a sea of thirty- and forty-somethings in Guns N’ Roses T-shirts – with the more hardcore legions brandishing tattoos of the band’s logo – bandanas and a smattering of top hats in deference to Slash. It’s so emotional remembering sitting on the road drinking Jim Beam, crying to November Rain.” Fans arrived to bag and body searches, followed by ticket checks, more bag searches, more body pat downs, instructions to empty your pockets into clear plastic bags and metal-detector checks. One positive note throughout that set was struck by the rain clearing and the VIPs tempted out of their tented bar in front of the castle. There were also sniffer dogs and a Garda presence as well as the Civil Defence lining the bridge towards the site and water craft patrolling the river. WET, WET, WET: Otherkin play support to Guns N’ Roses. Last time Guns N’ Roses played, some of the band went fishing in the river behind the stage waiting for the ever tardy Axl Rose to get to the gig …

Casting for role of Phil Lynott taking place in Dublin

The band had its breakthrough with The Boys Are Back in Town and the 1976 album Jailbreak. “Having known Phil, and loving his music from the very start, it’s a great honour to celebrate his life and work on the big screen,” said Sheridan. He fronted several bands in Ireland throughout the 1960s, eventually forming Thin Lizzy in 1969. Lynott collapsed on Christmas Day, 1986 and died days later as a result of pneumonia and heart failure, aged 36. “I see this as a non-fiction movie, one meant for the cinema, and I can’t wait to start the process of finding our modern day rocker.” Guns N’ Roses at Slane 1992: Appetite for self-destruction Cellophane flowers: My favourite ‘Sgt Pepper’ moments How ‘Sgt Pepper’ made the world slip on its axis Casting agency MovieExtras.ie say experience in film and television is not essential. A statue of the musician was erected on Harry Street in Dublin in 2005. Auditions will be filmed and may form part of the final film,” it says. “Our aim is to capture the energy and charisma that Phil gave the world throughout his amazing career as Thin Lizzy’s front man. It adds the successful applicant will work with professional mentors as well as those who influenced and worked with Lynott. “Please come prepared with a song, poem or example of Philip’s influence on you. If you feel you can embody this rock legend, we want to meet you.” Filming is due to take place on dates throughout 2017 while the documentary will be produced by Marcie Films and Eagle Rock Entertainment, with support from the Irish Film Board. Six-time Oscar nominee Jim Sheridan and award winning documentary maker Colm Quinn are working together on the documentary. Lynott was born in England in 1949 and moved to Dublin to live with his grandmother in Crumlin at the age of four. An open casting is being held at 12-13 Bow Street, Dublin 7, from 12.30pm today for an actor/musician/singer aged 18-25. Producers are looking for someone to play the part of Phil Lynott in a documentary that will recount his rise to stardom.

Palm Dog goes to the pooch from The Meyerowitz Stories

In recent years, Peter Bradshaw, chief film critic with the Guardian, has given a sort of keynote address that runs through the dog interest in the relevant year’s event. This year, one of the Alsatians – a handsome chap called Glock – had been employed in giving the Debussy Theatre a once over following evacuation after the discovery of a suspect package. Fellow British critics Anna Smith, Kaleem Aftab and Charles Gant joined Bradshaw and Muir on what must be the most entertaining jury in town. Indeed, in that director’s Amour, one character takes a dig at the English propensity for turning everything into a joke. One dog was outrageously overlooked. “Friends, Rovers and countrymen,” he said in a characteristic opening. Nothing would have given the cognoscenti greater pleasure than a glimpse of the famously gloomy Haneke turning up at this proudly silly event. This was almost as outrageous a decision as the exclusion of the killer dog from Green Room two years ago. Jones traditionally welcomes guests to the UK Pavillion, which backs onto the azure Mediterranean, with a speech that regards no pun as too groan-worthy. Anyway, the Palm Dog remains a well-organised trifle that, for regular attendees, ushers in the festival’s last rites in agreeably lighthearted form. The inquisitive whippet (if it’s actually just a small greyhound don’t sue me) in Ruben Östlund’s The Square steals every scene as she peers inquisitively from behind her owner. One suspects that, even had his dog won, the Austrian would not have made the short journey down to the beach. Peter reminded us that, in Michael Haneke’s typically sunny Happy End, a large dog, prone to barking menacingly at the patriarch of a bourgeois dynasty, offers reminders of the mean world that lurks at the elbow of the rich and complacent. What the heck is going on? Kate Muir of the Times was on hand to welcome on stage three of the sniffer dogs who patrol the festival. Clearly enjoying himself, despite all the Anglo-Saxon frivolity, he barked enthusiastically from the stage as tributes were paid to his efficiency and bravery. If you’re not paying attention, such appearances can easily pass you by. Previous winners have included Baby Boy in Behind the Candelabra, Uggie in The Artist and – a controversial virtual win – Dug from Pixar’s Up. This writer felt that the creature was worthy of at least a …

Hennessy New Irish Writing, May 2017: Eat Yourself Beautiful

Then pop down to BTs for a fresh mani, hectic week ahead.   Where’s Daddy’s credit card? She is a contributor to The Mighty and spunout.ie and has published poetry in The Quarryman. Few bevies in my embellished kimono, cheeky selfies and naughty nibbles with my fave, Roz. Molly Twomey was winner of NUI Galway’s scholarship for creative writing in 2016 and a featured poet at Over The Edge. Twomey is currently studying a bachelor of English in UCC, qualifying as a Hatha yoga instructor and working on her poetry collection Super stressed so many comments and compliments need my supergreen smoothie. After Rosanna Davison Try my chai spiced vanilla quinoa almond butter banana porridge. Nothing with gluten dairy meat or refined sugar passes these crème de nude lips. Can’t even. Pomeranians on each wrist, walkies in Wicklow and cuddles in our jammies at the doggy spa. Perfect peachy morning for pilates and a post workout brekkie.

Hennessy New Irish Writing, May 2017: Cracked Voices

Cracked voices, Not polished, Not perfect, Not afraid to risk, Not a role model to be heard. It was on a cassette player, in a house in Belfast, that I first heard your flamenco. You sang of strange fruit, and other ordinary things. I didn’t understand your words, but your voice was tangled and raw. Your trumpet mournfully rippled, across my little bedroom, broke over my mind, and we were brothers. Just ordinary to the core. Just dazzling for the heart. Billy Fenton has a certificate in creative writing from NUI Maynooth. It was on an old LP, in a Cork boarding house, that I first heard you sing. It was on my father’s old Nordmende radio, that I first heard your jazz. He lives in south Kilkenny and works in the technology sector. In a voice almost sweet. In a voice almost broken. This is his first published poem It gurgled up from some dark cave, and spat it’s pain into Belfast night.

Donald Clarke: Class still rules – it’s just harder to tell

Harrow or the Other Place. There was nobody to make him sound like something other than the son of a fish market porter (which he is). Drama school Those born in the 1930s and early 1940s couldn’t have known what was coming. Both are middle-class in different ways. Largely superficial What changed in the 1960s was largely superficial. Don’t be seen too near the opera. Look into his background and you could be forgiven for thinking that one strain of the English class system died with him. The influence that results from being born into the right sort of family is still invaluable Neither saw what was coming and allowed elocution teachers to make them what they are now. The son of a barrister (admittedly himself from a humble background), Blair was educated at the distinguished Fettes College – “the Eton of the North” – in Edinburgh, but, when addressing the TV audience, felt the need to litter his conversation with the odd “you know” and the occasional “like” to emphasise his supposed ordinariness. The influence that results from being born into the right sort of family is still invaluable when attempting to get a handle on the levers of power. It became more acceptable to appear less upper class when manoeuvring one’s way up the greasy pole. Indeed, by the 1990s, it was seen as essential to come across as a man of the people. Roger Moore would have recognised those types when, 60 years ago, he was starting out in the business. Do I have that right? Corbyn is middle-class in an urban geography-teacher fashion: scuffed, bearded, at home to jam-making. Michael Caine, older than Bowles or Stewart, had the good fortune not to attend drama school. The end of national service, the arrival of the welfare state and relative prosperity allowed working-class actors and musicians the freedom to mould popular culture to their own ends. Benedict Cumberbatch went to Harrow. Sir Patrick Stewart, than whom there is none more Shakespearean, grew up speaking a thick West Yorkshire dialect. May is middle-class like a vicar’s daughter from the Home Counties: buttoned-up, clipped, socially reserved. Damien Lewis, Tom Hiddleston, Eddie Redmayne and Dominic West all went to Eton. Never forget that excruciating moment when David Cameron forgot what football team he was supposed to support Etonian David Cameron’s cabinet was groaning with enough fellow schoolmates to satisfy the Marquess …

Guns N’ Roses at Slane 1992: Appetite for self-destruction

A year later fans had trashed an arena in Montreal, after Rose again stormed off stage. Fans had wrecked the venue; Rose had been charged with inciting the riot. When they did go on stage, the ever combustible Rose was capable of anything. Really?” Half a gallon Duff was drinking a half a gallon of vodka a day; at that stage Slash too was drinking heavily and ingesting vast quantities of cocaine, heroin and crack. Twenty-five years ago, Guns N’ Roses were the biggest band in the world. Crushed to death At Donington Park in Britain in 1988, two fans had been crushed to death during the band’s set; in 1991 singer Axl Rose had stopped a show in St Louis when he had discovered a fan was filming the show. The musicians – waifs and strays who had emerged from the scuzzy Los Angeles hard rock scene – had conquered the planet musically in the previous five years. His maternal grandfather Jon Harrington was from Co Cork. It was “ridiculously self-indulgent”, confessed lead guitarist Slash many years later, the sound of a band trying too hard to recreate the sound and sense of desperation which had made them special. Cellophane flowers: My favourite ‘Sgt Pepper’ moments How ‘Sgt Pepper’ made the world slip on its axis First listen: ‘Sgt Pepper’ is the comfort and escape we need today They were unpredictable and exhilarating and almost constantly drunk, stoned or both. They came trailing a reputation for unpredictability. “I was around a bunch of Irish relatives who were drinking a ton and then this old gal, a relative, grabbed me by the cheeks and said ‘you’re drinking too much’,” Duff told The Irish Times six years ago. All these f***ers were drinking. Their brilliant debut album Appetite for Destruction, released in 1987, took a year to reach the top of the Billboard 200, propelled there by the constant rotation on MTV of the videos for Paradise City and Sweet Child O’ Mine. A reception committee of his Irish relatives was on hand, 100 people who hosted a barbecue in his honour. But by 1992 they were falling apart. Trouble followed Guns N’ Roses wherever they went. I drink too much compared to these folks? Guns N’ Roses arriving at Dublin Airport on May 14th, 1992, for their Slane Castle gig. McKagan knew he was in trouble when he realised he …

Hennessy New Irish Writing winner, May 2017: The Summer of Wasps

Why should there be? A person on their deathbed will start to pull and pick at their blanket and their clothes close to the end. Martyrs to the cause, they objected to council improvements, the drama society’s choice of play and the hotel’s New Year celebrations. Your old room and your old bed amongst your sisters. If anything in the town needed to be interfered with, they were there. I closed the door and sat by the window opening it wide. Cerberus in a housecoat. One would fly indoors, almost staggering in its flight, drunk with sunlight. First their ardent letters of protest were handwritten by Joan, as Pat hovered and dictated. Your past was a foreign land which I could never visit. She had fainted, and I was to go stay with my mother. Veering off on your own trajectory, you brought Dad home where his easy charm won the sisters round. I would be told that story over the years. Why shouldn’t she have what she likes around her? I have brooded over the withering expectations of mothers and daughters. Then I stopped picking at the scab and let it heal over. She returned to the task like an old master playing Rachmaninoff. I am a visitor and as such there is nothing for me to do. You claimed this sense of foreboding somehow leaked into your womb, creating an angst-ridden child. Wasps or no wasps, I needed air. I stood, then with a dignified lurch I arrived in the hall. Orpheus they called him after that. She had not, could not, speak a word since I arrived. Then you would tell me of plucking cockles ripe from rocks and eating them, fishing in rock-pools and catching buckets of crabs with a stick and string from the pier. Joan’s laboured two-fingered typing and the drama of the ribbon change landed her in an evening typing course. It would begin with a generalised overview, accompanied by hints of personal experience, then followed up by air. The faraway look in your eyes would appear and you would be gone. I really didn’t care, I was so used to her absence her presence was burdensome. Aunt Pat was the eldest and Aunt Joan followed in age and body. It started off with anecdotes of hilarious moments during serious and sombre occasions. And that’s how it should be. Perhaps there I felt …

Musical poverty: If ‘Oliver!’ can do it, so can ‘Angela’s Ashes’

“Whenever we would come over, he would get a bit misty, because he was coming back this time without a chip on his shoulder,” Frey McCourt says. So one could never really get away from it. Given how things have turned out for her so far, one wouldn’t bet against it. Friendly and funny, with a disarmingly wicked sense of humour, Ellen Frey had a “very happy” childhood in southern California. “I was indignant – ‘How dare they?’ Of course, what did I know. After his marriage to Ellen, however, things changed. Angela’s Ashes The Musical opens at the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, Dublin, on July 18th “Yeah, it’s like being in the mafia, you know, when Al Pacino says, ‘you can’t get out of it, they just pull you back in,’” she chuckles. “Frank was more than 20 years older than I [was]. Two decades after her husband published his first book, Ellen Frey McCourt still marvels at the experience. “I can still see this long, tweedy, houndstooth coat coming down the steps and this person appearing wearing an Afghan hat, and his voice booming out, ‘Are any of my ex-wives here?’ That was his opening gambit.” Born in New York in 1930, raised in Limerick and resident in the States since 1950, McCourt was a literary “aspirant” when he met Frey, but had never published a book. McCourt’s portrayal of a Limerick so poor that hungry children would gather coal on the streets while their young siblings died in bed won over American readers but sparked a backlash in Ireland. But she has not been left alone with her memories, far from it. She had been married for two years to Frank McCourt, an Irish-American retired teacher in his mid-60s, when he finished writing a memoir of his Limerick childhood, entitled Angela’s Ashes. But if you’re not seeing it and not living it, you don’t know it’s there.” Life in America But in general, things got much better for the McCourts. We connected on so many levels, but when he talked about childhood, it was Dickensian to me “We got married in August 1994, and he started writing that October. “One always thinks, wouldn’t it be wonderful if someone with vision, like [the new show’s producer] Pat Moylan, would be able to latch onto this and really turn it into something,” she says, nibbling on a pastry. So …

Hennessy New Irish Writing, May 2017: Poetry

I’m a lucky escape, my bricks and mortar laced with pyrite. I was Melissa and Dean’s first love nest. I never had the chance to be a home. I’m a death trap, my pipes and cables connected to nothing, like those who shelter in my corners. I’m a home all right, a home for the demented. I am a rubbish dump, hangout for junkies and users; a public toilet, condominium for used condoms, fag ends, syringes, empty beer cans, broken bottles. Her website, oldfilibuster.com is a response to everyday life. Some poor sucker strapped to a mortgage might have watched me expand, crack and crumble. She performs her ‘Frankly Blank Verse’ at ‘Takin the Mic’ at the Irish Writers Centre and ‘The Merg Sessions’ at Tallaght Library. I don’t qualify for a welcome mat. Enter at your own risk. If only they’d got the roof on I could have housed someone. Don’t think I’ll be seeing that pair again. Berni Dwan teaches journalism, history and English literature in Dublin. My half built wall shouts, “Melissa loves Dean 2012.” Women of honour: The godmothers of the Italian mafia Hennessy New Irish Writing, May 2017: Cracked Voices Hennessy New Irish Writing, May 2017: Eat Yourself Beautiful Wonder if they’re married now, looking for a house with windows and a roof? So, here I am in a commuter belt town; beyond the industrial estate; not for sale. If only they’d got the windows in, my someone could have watched with folded arms the garden growing, dogs sniffing at the gate, door to door sellers hesitating before ringing the bell.

Women of honour: The godmothers of the Italian mafia

“Her arrest in the course of Operation All Inside on April 28th, 2010, saved her life. I tried to leave him several times but my family stopped me.’ “While her husband was in prison and Giusy had no means of supporting her family, her father decided to open a supermarket and to employ Giusy as a cashier. “With no men left, the Giuliano clan was effectively decapitated and broken. Her testimony implicated family, friends, and carabinieri. “‘It’s said that you find the most beautiful women in Naples in this neighbourhood. “Erminia’s destiny was determined by her birthplace, Forcella, a poor but vibrant district in the shadow of Naples’ Duomo. She was sentenced to 10 years in prison. “It was around this time that she met her future husband, Rocco Palaia, a young man of 20 who worked for the Sardignoli cousins; as a sinister forewarning, they met in the village cemetery on the Day of the Dead. Or so it seemed until Erminia took control with an iron fist. “Among them was Giuseppina ‘Giusy’ Pesce, aged 31, mother of three and niece of the main boss, as well as her mother, Angela Ferraro, her sister Marina and brother Francesco, together with a huge number of uncles and cousins. But there was no such secondary school in Rosarno and daughters within the Pesce clan were not allowed to study outside the village. Similarly, when these discreet women find themselves widowed, they do not turn to conventional justice, but rather remain within the secretive world of the mafia family, urging their sons towards ‘vendetta’, revenge. Women of Honour is published by Hurst £12.99 After the supermarket’s rapid collapse into bankruptcy she then found work in a factory owned by her father-in-law producing crystallised fruits. “Her reputation as a tenacious woman was complemented by her readiness to take direct action, as on the day in 1997 when she stabbed a female rival, or, two years later, when she deliberately drove her car into the window of a toy shop whose owner had refused to pay the pizzo, the protection money traditionally extorted from shopkeepers.” Erminia appeared on a list of Italy’s most wanted criminals, and was arrested on December 23rd, 2000, after being on the run for almost a year. .] “The notoriety of this dynasty was due to its legendary chief, Luigi Giuliano, father of 11 children. Her uncle, Rocco, “has condemned …

Cellophane flowers: My favourite ‘Sgt Pepper’ moments

Looking-glass ties. Rocking-horse people. He sings: “It couldn’t get much worse!” a line that perfectly encapsulates the yin and yang of McCartney’s happy positivity and Lennon’s innate contrariness. I want somebody to love.” The orchestral bridge used to graft Lennon’s opening stanzas of A Day in the Life to an unfinished McCartney composition about smoking dope on the upper deck of a bus. The aching sadness of Sheila Bromberg’s harp in She’s Leaving Home, McCartney’s kitchen-sink drama with strings, inspired by a tabloid newspaper story about a real life teenage runaway named Melanie Coe. The surrealistic imagery in Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, inspired by Lennon’s childhood reading of Lewis Carroll’s classics and his adventures with hallucinogenic drugs. The beautiful, logical simplicity of the call-and-answer section in With a Little Help from My Friends: “Do you need anybody? Could it be anybody? Newspaper taxis. How ‘Sgt Pepper’ made the world slip on its axis First listen: ‘Sgt Pepper’ is the comfort and escape we need today How The Beatles ended up performing live for ever Lennon’s rejoinder to McCartney’s “I’ve got to admit it’s getting better, a little better all time” in the song Getting Better. Cellophane flowers. I need somebody to love.

First listen: ‘Sgt Pepper’ is the comfort and escape we need today

 Released on June 1st, 1967, Sgt Pepper soundtracked the Summer of Love and even though the psychedelic inclinations (that bloody sitar again) influenced Pink Floyd, The Flaming Lips and launched a thousand Tame Impalas, even now it’s the tender moments on Sgt Pepper that stand out the most.  Take for example the recording of With a Little Help from My Friends, the Wannabe of its day, written in a lower key for Starr by Lennon and McCartney. It was the beginning of the end and 50 years and one first full listen later, it’s the comfort and the escape we need today.   Even though the world was in chaos and the band was beginning to crumble, Sgt Pepper is full of inside jokes and shows signs of camaraderie. The world had changed enormously in the four years since The Beatles released their first album.  Without The Beatles, it’s hard to know what state we’d be in. Sgt Pepper feels like a parting gift from The Beatles of old, a contribution to their mythical status To reflect that, they hung up their tailored suits, grew their hair out even more and a few years deeper into John Lennon and Harrison’s committed LSD voyage, one that started on 1965’s Rubber Soul and 1966’s Revolver. Their eighth album in the space of five years, Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band feels like a parting gift from The Beatles of old, a contribution to their mythical status. It had everything except the contents of Sgt Pepper’s, which released no singles but changed how we consume albums. Dedicating a weekend to the Sgt, I learned that Ringo Starr is my favourite Beatle, they still liked each other but hated what they’d become, and we finally know who’s to blame for Wayne Coyne. All we needed, other than love, as a guide to the most influential band in music history was on 1, a compilation of The Beatles’ number one singles. Like every pop act to follow, there comes a day when playing it safe just isn’t satisfying any more. How ‘Sgt Pepper’ made the world slip on its axis Cellophane flowers: My favourite ‘Sgt Pepper’ moments How The Beatles ended up performing live for ever Fourth wall With the elimination of a live audience, they created one on the opening track, applauding the rumblings of an orchestra warming up, breaking the fourth wall. A child’s drawing …

How ‘Sgt Pepper’ made the world slip on its axis

Bob Dylan recorded Highway 61 Revisited in six days. Photograph: Mark and Colleen Hayward/Redferns When McCartney conceived the idea for Sgt Pepper in the autumn of 1966, the album had become the thing. While he hated writing songs to order, he realised that, unless he got to work, he would have nothing on the album, suggesting that the real creative rivalry behind Sgt Pepper wasn’t between McCartney and Wilson but between McCartney and Lennon. and George? McCartney was flush with new ideas for the album. I understood from a very early age that it was the greatest record ever made. Pet Sounds was Brian Wilson’s attempt to best Rubber Soul and to capture on vinyl the sounds he heard in his head when he was stoned. And while Sgt Pepper would become the record that defined the psychedelic era, and the soundtrack to a summer in which young people turned on, tuned in and dropped out in their droves, it was created by musicians who were stoned rather than hallucinating. Or rather McCartney was, since Sgt Pepper was his vision. I think I loved Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band from the moment I became aware of it. Musical alternates Innovations in recording technology were changing the game. In fact, by the strict behavioural standards that manager Brian Epstein set for them, they were being positively seditious, growing facial hair, calling out the prime minister and the leader of the opposition (by name!) in Taxman – and were those intakes of breath in Girl really the sound of someone toking on a joint? I couldn’t keep my sticky, six-year-old fingers off it. But I’m enamoured by it as much today as I was when my trembling, six-year-old hands first slipped the record from its cover. It was the soundtrack to the Sixties. The Beatles celebrate the completion of their new album, ‘Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’, at a press conference held at the west London home of their manager Brian Epstein on May 19th, 1967. The Beatles perform ‘Rain’ and ‘Paperback Writer’ on the BBC television show ‘Top Of The Pops’ in June 16th, 1966. Later on, John Lennon said he grew to resent the album, seeing it as a Paul McCartney record more than a Beatles one. These days, of course, we can all use drag and drop to create our own preferred versions of Sgt Pepper. It …

Can Speak: A new poem by Lani O’Hanlon

The pair of us in Tindle’s wood looking for fairies and treasure he conjured from twigs, leaves, saucers of light. Breath rendered pink. I didn’t know then that Tindle’s wood was a place where men hanged themselves. Lani O’ Hanlon is a dancer and movement therapist. She is the author of Dancing the Rainbow (Mercier Press, 2007). Her fiction has been shortlisted for Over the Edge writer of the year and Hennessy New Irish Writing I am trapped in that wood. Birdies, he said, can speak if you slice their tongues with a sixpence. The dirty greens of winter days powdered with roses, reindeer moss, finger salt and gold leaf. In spring, the rafters and corners of barns, lifted so high I could look down on bird’s eggs, blue and green, fragile as baby’s nails. A man coming.

In a word. . . canal

Canal from French canal, chanel, Latin canalis meaning “water pipe, groove, channel”. It is doubtful whether either would be pleased to know that both their statues were made by the same sculptor, John Coll. Kavanagh had a brush with lung cancer but lived to write the words Leafy-with-love banks and the green waters of the canal/ Pouring redemption for me, that I do/ The will of God, wallow in the habitual, the banal.. It is proof, were it needed, that being up close and personal with death can shake up even the most hardened soul. But today, let us doff the hat in Behan’s direction in honour of the Royal Canal which celebrates its 200 anniversary. The animosity between the two was not helped by Behan’s comment that Kavanagh’s flat on Pembroke Road in Dublin was the only place in Dublin where, “you had to wipe your feet after leaving!” Both are commemorated by statues alongside their respective canals. .Wonderful. This is territory of Kavanagh’s great rival Brendan Behan who wrote the Auld Triangle about his days in nearby Mountjoy jail. Even in death such tenuous connection would cause them great dis-ease. He is commemorated there (where there is water, canal water, preferably) at Baggot Street Bridge. But he might as easily be writing about the Royal Canal on Dublin’s northside, also so stilly Greeny at the heart of summer. Originally in English meant “a pipe for liquid” but in 1670s this transferred to “artificial waterway”. A hungry feeling came o’er me stealing and the mice were squealing in my prison cell/ And the Auld Triangle went jingle jangle all along the banks of the royal canal. As are those other lines which flow beneath: – “O unworn world enrapture me, encapture me in a web/ Of fabulous grass and eternal voices by a beech,/ Feed the gaping need of my senses, give me ad lib/ To pray unselfconsciously with overflowing speech He is, of course, writing about Dublin’s Grand Canal. inaword@irishtimes.com To mark the event a plaque commemorating the bicentenary will be unveiled this afternoon at Richmond Harbour, Co Longford, followed by music, talks and exhibitions. It is difficult to believe a noted curmudgeon such as Patrick Kavanagh could produce the tender, joyous even, sonnet Canal Bank Walk. With the odd swan going by head low with many apologies. However.

Dublin Dance festival round-up: Sunny, Merry.go.round and Singspiele

Against a white-lit screen, Mambouch moved slowly along a ledge from left to right, undressing and redressing himself from the laden clothes hooks above his head, while unpeeling from his own face a succession of black and white photos of diverse facial images which gave each newly dressed figure a distinctive if transient persona. Then those rhythms of Sunny made famous by Marvin Gaye began and a tone was set. As the Dublin Dance Festival continues, the intentional interweaving of recurring motifs and styles by festival director Benjamin Perchet became more apparent. When the music reached a crescendo, the dance accelerated; arms, legs and elbows angling, figures leapfrogging or rolling into phases of vibrant hip-hop and breakdancing moves. Together they invited us into an unsettling world of ever-changing identities and invisible lives. Mabouch’s intuitive gestures added a quick swagger, a crumpled shoulder, or a hand clutching a handbag while Alex Beneteaud’s cinematic lighting picked up dead eyes, a forced smile, or too painted lips. Sunny Five Stars The Abbey Theatre With a blast of appropriately intense white sunlight, the week began with Sunny, a meditation on time passing and the myriad possibilities of human interaction. At times, the work seemed a little cluttered with unclear references, as when dancers created tableaux, but some striking images persisted. With the sun rising higher, the dancers began to pick up pace and responded to the light and the music, their bare limbs stretching and extending to the sky. These included dancer Marcia Liu’s leg arcing achingly over the back of an abandoned chair, pure emotion among the debris of disappointment. The addition of a waistcoat, the loosening of a tie, the unbuttoning of a shirt changed our perceptions. Merry.go.round FOUR Stars Samuel Beckett Theatre A more sombre note infused the interactions and playacting of Maria Nilsson Waller’s merry.go.round. But here we engaged with the collision of strangers in restricted interior spaces, seeking love or resolution. Israeli/French choreographer and designer Emmanuel Gat’s 10 athletic dancers loped, huddled and casually collided as sunlight filled the empty stage of the Abbey Theatre. Singspiele was an eloquent, unsettling and haunting work, beautifully conceived and skilfully performed. In this re-imagined identity parade, we were invited to look at them fleetingly, maybe even recognise them; the famous, infamous and unknown, the old and young, the women and men. This Swedish dancemaker’s work also opened with a shaft of sunlight. …

Lord Mountcharles to miss first Slane concert as Guns N’ Roses take stage

Follow the signs and garda directions to the parking areas. Temperatures are due to drop to between 15 and 20 degrees with heavy, thundery rain for most of the morning. “I will be there in spirit.” On Saturday 80,000 fans will see Guns ‘N’ Roses headline at the natural amphitheatre that rests beside the Boyne river and Slane Castle. Axl Rose and Slash perform at the Guns N’ Roses Not In This Lifetime Tour at QSAC Stadium Brisbane on February 7, 2017 in Brisbane, Australia. All car parks are operated independently of MCD and a parking charge will apply. How The Beatles ended up performing live for ever Jeff Mills: ‘We should know what we’re dancing for’ Sonny Condell & Patrick Kehoe – Seize The Day album review: a seamless collaboration That will not be a factor this year with the advice being that they will go on stage, possibly by 7pm, to ensure they get to play their full set. Gates will open at 2pm, with first support act Otherkin kicking off the show at 3.30pm followed by Mark Lanegan and Royal Blood. On Saturday, Slane village will be completely closed and a comprehensive traffic plan will be in operation. The current heatwave which has seen the country bask in the hottest temperatures of the year this week will begin to ease slightly on Saturday. There will be over 400 gardaí on duty on the day, as well as an additional 1,200 stewards and security workers. Photograph: Marc Grimwade/WireImage Gardaí have also warned about pick pockets saying, “Keep your belongings safe – especially tickets, phone and cash.” Marathon Coach will also be running a return service from Custom House Quay every half hour from 11am to 5pm. Saturday night will be generally dry with clear spells and temperatures falling to between 7 and 10 degrees. There will also be a large team of doctors and medical workers, including an on-site hospital along with five first aid posts. It will be their second time appearing there; the last time was 25 years ago when at one point Lord Mountcharles feared things could get out of hand as the crowd got restless waiting for them to perform. Through a spokesperson he said: “I am obviously extremely disappointed that I can’t be there and my wish is for all of the fans to enjoy the day. If you’re planning on driving, allow …

How The Beatles ended up performing live for ever

After all, wasn’t this just another jukebox musical? We hope you will enjoy the show. “We’ve had enough of performing forever,” said John Lennon, at the end of four years of rigorous touring, unable to hear themselves over the screams of Beatlemaniacs. It doesn’t all work. In a town where love seems like just another commodity in abundant supply, All You Need Is Love (which The Beatles debuted just weeks after the release of Sgt Pepper’s), feels like a necessary salve; its coda here is interspersed with the group’s ebullient studio chatter, jibing and joking in the immediate afterglow of creation. Harrison’s idea However, the show, Love, began as George Harrison’s idea, not long before his death, in collaboration with Cirque du Soleil cofounder Guy Laliberté. But the real sensation – aided by a purpose-built, 360-degree auditorium and a phenomenally complicated stage, all wrapped up in digital backdrops and given a perfectionist’s sound system – is that of a live performance, where immortal songs sound freshly reconsidered, musical ideas tumble together in something like free association, and the band appears to us either in surrogate figures or in iconic silhouette, to do what is still most wanted of them – to come together and play. Strange, then, that the beginning of these “studio years” should result in a work that constantly presents itself, however archly, as a spontaneous performance – with band introductions, audience screams, applause, music hall motifs, encores and Albert Hall mentions – whose lyrics, energy and effects all communicate a sense of liveness. It’s a typically knowing contradiction: we have had enough of performing forever. When Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds is performed as a sylph-like trapeze act high above a lake of dry ice, it feels as though John Lennon’s euphoric hallucinations have been reduced to something like a family-friendly microdose. Three years of negotiations followed between the surviving Beatles, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr; Harrison’s widow, Olivia Harrison; and John’s widow, Yoko Ono. Three ambitions The ambition of Love in performance – directed by the effervescently named Dominic Champagne, presumably no stranger to pop – is to make the music do three things. Sgt Pepper’s: when The Beatles got high on pomposity Rebel yell: how the Irish dominated British rock music The Beatles, Bob Dylan and The Beach Boys: 12 months that changed music When word first started to circulate in 2000 that The …

Irish presenters handle Manchester news with admirable calm

He talks to AJ Singh, a Manchester taxi driver who offered his services for free throughout the night to the many people left stranded without transport or money.  Chaos and fear Moncrieff’s guest paints a picture of chaos and fear in the aftermath of the bombing, repeatedly describing it as “a nightmare”. But Murphy stresses another key issue. When co-anchor Audrey Carville reports that “police say children are among the dead”, the sickening enormity of the atrocity the night before hits home. Unsurprisingly, the experience has taken its toll. If anything, the duo’s calm demeanour, even if strained at times, underlines the grimness of the event. Either way, it’s a welcome distraction from more serious matters, as Moncrieff’s archly amused manner attests.  Unseemly joy Amid the pain of Tuesday, News at One (RTÉ Radio 1, weekdays) features a voice of unrestrained, almost unseemly joy. By the time the presenters hear accounts of injuries caused by bolts from the bomb, it’s hard to know whether to weep or vomit.  Carville and Mac Coille keep a composed tone, even as they hear eyewitness accounts of the bombing and read out heartbreaking tweets from worried relatives.   On Tuesday morning, however, the usual emotional distance is shattered as the story of the Manchester terrorist attack emerges in all its horror. When Singh talks of seeing someone with an arm blown off, even the unflappable Moncrieff blasphemes in horror. It belongs to Seán FitzPatrick, the former chairman of Anglo Irish Bank, after his acquittal on charges of misleading auditors over multimillion euro loans made to him by the bank. It’s a jolting reminder of the proximity of such violence, not to mention its randomness. Tuning into Morning Ireland (RTÉ Radio 1, weekdays) always requires a certain degree of compartmentalisation. As casualty figures filter through, a sombre Shay Byrne talks to sports correspondent Darren Frehill, who tells how at the weekend he had brought his two young daughters to the Dublin concert by Ariana Grande, the singer whose show was attacked in Manchester. Rather than fulminating in rage – which would be understandable – the presenters lay out the facts of the story, however dreadful. If that’s hard to stomach, the indignation rises to critical levels on the next day’s programme, when business editor David Murphy analyses why the case failed. John Murray, guest host on Today with Sean O’Rourke (RTÉ Radio 1, weekdays), checks …